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Epidemic of Model 3 small window break-ins

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Active Member
Nov 22, 2017
Rancho Cucamonga
BTW, if your insurance offers low or zero deductible glass only replacement option, take it. For me, it was only about $17 extra per year for Tesla (it was $6 per year for Lexus), but it lowered the glass only deductible to $100. It pays for itself even with only 1 glass (including windshield) replacement in 20+ years.
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Apr 24, 2018
San Francisco, CA
Indeed the alarm DOES NOT go off. That's the headline to me. PS: This is actually happening quite a bit from anecdotal evidence, but I don't have the stats to back that up. I simply know that the Tesla servicing center in Burlingame told my friend (the victim) that this is quite common and happens frequently (what that means from % or overall #, I don't know).
My insurance agent told me the same thing yesterday. That it is a very common to see that exact glass broken on Teslas. So much so that body shops find it hard to get enough spares to take care of all the cars coming in. He has seen wait times of 2-3 weeks.
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Apr 24, 2018
San Francisco, CA
I wonder if putting a note on the triangle window to say "nothing in the trunk" would help?
I plan on doing this after I get my car back from the shop. Until I can come up with a good locking mechanism for the rear seats, I will just keep them down. And add zero-deductible glass-only replacement coverage to my insurance.


Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
Jan 12, 2011
San Luis Obispo, CA
How about a high pressure dye pack spray mounted in the pillar just under the camera?

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Slightly faster than 5mph
Jul 26, 2018
San Francisco
Perhaps I wasn't clear on the purpose of using the camera. I'm not trying to catch the thief: I agree with your assessment on the futility. I'm hoping that can launch the car alarm. I'm really focused on having the car alarm go off so it at least becomes known to thieves and they are just a bit more gun shy. A major attraction to this type of attack is that the alarm is silent, so the downside/risk is minimized.

Gotcha - I think you were pretty clear in your post actually. I wasn’t directly commenting on yours but rather general calls for parking mode etc in this context (of which I myself have been a part of).

In my neighborhood alarms tend to be ignored so I don’t know if they can prevent the grab part of smash n’ grab. Also seems like there might be a lot of false positives with motion detection based alarms?
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Active Member
May 31, 2015
lake elsinore, ca
Or they take a visible lock as an indication that something valuable must be in the trunk ...

I plan on leaving the rear seats folded down and the trunk visibly bare when I park in the city. Empty grocery bags, jackets and other incidentals will go in the cubby under the trunk or frunk. Hopefully, if a cursory glance shows nothing there, they'll move on. The presence of aftermarket or DIY locking mechanisms may not become apparent until after they've smashed the window. Worse yet, these locks may leave the impression you really must have something valuable in the trunk and the thief will take it up to the next level and just break into the trunk.

it's a crime of opportunity. they're not going to start taking a crowbar to peoples' trunks...that's the opposite of a quick smash and grab.
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Active Member
Apr 9, 2016
New Jersey
I don't know of any vehicle OEM manufacturer that has a "car alarm" that has glass-break sensors.

The August 1, 2018 version of the Model 3 manual is very specific about the "limitations" of the "Security Alarm" (Page 104), so saying that if the alarm doesn't go off when a window is smashed is a "bug", is not technically a bug. A "Feature Request"? Definitely. But not a bug.

Subaru does as an option.
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Rideshare Monkey
Sep 29, 2015
CA, United States
I try to always remember to lock the car. And I always try to remember to put the backseats down if parking in the sketchy area.

Don’t like it but simply a symptom of a society where the common people are more and more desperate.


Jan 29, 2018
Bay Area
Happened to me a couple of months ago in Oakland. Glass shop said they were so backordered that it could be a month before they got the part. Took it to Tesla and thankfully they were able to do the work in a few days, and at a lower cost (I think around $250). This is absolutely an epidemic.

I would also echo the zero glass deductible voices, I thankfully switched to that as well (partially due to all the debris on the beaten down highways constantly chipping my windshields).
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Apr 23, 2018
Orange County
First, dying @ "Walking Meth"

Second, I can't tell if you're being sarcastic, but would it really be better to leave change in the car and the doors unlocked?? Part of me thinks if you live somewhere that's prone to these incidents it may not be a bad idea. other ideas include being a good neighbor and speaking to and knowing your local junkie just as well as you know your model citizen. (Of course this looks over commuting organized criminals.)

I don't have a car yet, but when I've used rentals, I've had questionable guys say they'd keep an eye on it for a buck or two. Because I am who I am...I usually give them a don't fu*k with me look, try to remember everything about their face and what they're wearing, and walk away. That tactic will have to get slightly modified when it's my property.

Living in an urban area this happens a lot... just tired of it happening.

So yeah just being sarcastic cause I’m sick of it. “The Walking Meth” will help themselves to donations wether or not you’re willing to give it.

I do have Ring Camera lights and I do notice from time to time them checking doors. As soon as they get within range my lights come on and they scramble like cockroaches to the next dark house.
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Eno Deb

Active Member
Aug 17, 2018
SF Bay Area
I try to always remember to lock the car. And I always try to remember to put the backseats down if parking in the sketchy area.
Don't make the mistake of thinking this only happens in sketchy areas. These gangs also specifically seek out places like tourist hotspots and shopping centers in affluent areas.
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